Image from www.bhf.org.uk
Last Valentine's I wrote a post about innovation of the recellularisation of the human heart. The intention being to refine human heart transplant surgery, eventually to allow the transplant of a clone of a person's own heart or part, when it is medically needed. I explained the existing difficulties of organ donation transplant in the post. It is something that I continue to follow, in supporting the work of the British Heart Foundation and my belief in regenerative medicine as the future for many currently incurable afflictions.
When efforts to clone a human heart were reported, there followed many deflating pronouncements of "science fiction". There will always be detractors to forward thinking, but had intellectual and lateral minds never reached far, we would be living in an innovation vacuum and without much to admire. Some detractors, balance the discussion and have a place in maintaining ethics and dignity for the patient experience. I know from understanding patient experiences, that whether it be from physical or mental affliction, if we are sound, we must possess our own bodies and minds and make decisions for ourselves and our own bodies, which should be respected.
Here are some of the recent advancements in regenerative medicine:
The future human rebuilding heart muscle - "Nothing is less in our power than the heart," Jean-Jacques Rousseau
The Zebra fish can repair it's own heart; unlocking the secrets of how they do this.
Studying the early development of the heart; we were able to grow a whole heart before we were born, but later in life we can't repair our hearts if they are damaged.
Rebuilding heart tissue; new source for heart cells, building a "heart-patch" and epicardium and thymosin beta4
Ethics of stem cell research funded by BHF.
Regenerative medicine in surgery and response; cancer-patient-synthetic-organ-transplant, transplant-synthetic-trachea-in-baltimore-man, brain tissue cloning breakthrough mental illness, neurologic-improvement-detected-in-rats-receiving-stem-cell-transplant/
I write this on my blog, primarily because innovation in heart medicine is something that has personal importance, but I also have an international readership to my blog, whom I really respect. Scientific research and innovation is carried out throughout the world, and though the work of the BHF is based in the UK, this knowledge needs to be spread as widely as possible. There is a long way still to go in the science of regenerative medicine, but it is an important way to our future. As individuals, we direct what is important and has meaning in this world and this is a powerful tool to remember and apply with wisdom. Thank you for taking the time to read.
For all my learning, my heart beats louder............